Sony inks 'iRadio' deal, giving Apple all 3 major labels

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 2014
Sony Music has reportedly signed a deal with Apple for its anticipated "iRadio" streaming music service, marking the last of the three major music labels to reach an agreement.

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Apple's signing of Sony was first reported on Friday by Peter Kafka of AllThingsD, who cited an unnamed person familiar with negotiations between the two companies. The alleged agreement is further evidence that Apple is gearing up to unveil its rumored "iRadio" service at next week's Worldwide Developers Conference.

Details of the deal come just days after Apple was also said to have successfully courted Warner Music Group. Previously, Apple had already agreed to terms with Universal Music Group, rounding out the big three labels.

For months, reports have claimed that stalled negotiations with Sony in particular have been holding up Apple's debut of "iRadio." Specifically, it was said that a song skipping feature was a major stumbling block for the record label.

With Sony now on board, Apple is expected to announced "iRadio" at its WWDC keynote next Monday. The anticipated service is expected to be a direct competitor to established streaming music services like Pandora.

Apple is also said to be revising its iAd network to run audio advertisements as part of the service. Ad support is expected allow users to stream content from "iRadio" for free when it launches.

Google also recently stepped into the streaming Internet radio market with All Access , which launched in May. The search company's subscription music service is expected to debut on iOS devices in the coming weeks.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 63
    ghostface147ghostface147 Posts: 1,629member


    Hmmm, I read somewhere that labels and publishers were two different things.  If you sign a label, does that give you rights from the publishers as well?

  • Reply 2 of 63
    irelandireland Posts: 17,490member
    The sweetest deal would be one that combines Pandora and Spotify, and gives people the option to choose free or paid monthly plans with a different set of features / limitations. That would please everyone. But that probably won't happen, sadly.
  • Reply 3 of 63
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,197member
    Hmmm, I read somewhere that labels and publishers were two different things.  If you sign a label, does that give you rights from the publishers as well?

    If I am remembering correctly publishers only come into play when you are dealing with the song as a performable work of art. In other words, I want the rights to perform live or record the song 'imagine' by John Lennon. I go to the publisher. For an existing performance that I want to use that performance in a movie, TV show, distribution system, I go to the label who already has a deal with the publishers for their rights within THAT performance.

    Think not unlike patent exhaustion.
  • Reply 4 of 63
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,197member
    ireland wrote: »
    The sweetest deal would be one that combines Pandora and Spotify, and gives people the option to choose free or paid monthly plans with a different my set of features/limitations. That would please everyone. But that probably won't happen, sadly.

    I'm still thinking these rumors are way off from what this 'service' will be. And the ad thing might be something totally separate
  • Reply 5 of 63
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    charlituna wrote: »
    I'm still thinking these rumors are way off from what this 'service' will be. And the ad thing might be something totally separate

    Three days to go and we know so little. Tim Cook really has doubled down on security.
  • Reply 6 of 63
    stelligentstelligent Posts: 2,680member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post





    Three days to go and we know so little. Tim Cook really has doubled down on security.


    OTOH, we knew virtually nothing when music sales on iTunes was announced with multiple labels already signed up. I think it was likewise with iPad and book publishers?

  • Reply 7 of 63
    stelligentstelligent Posts: 2,680member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by charlituna View Post





    If I am remembering correctly publishers only come into play when you are dealing with the song as a performable work of art. In other words, I want the rights to perform live or record the song 'imagine' by John Lennon. I go to the publisher. For an existing performance that I want to use that performance in a movie, TV show, distribution system, I go to the label who already has a deal with the publishers for their rights within THAT performance.



    Think not unlike patent exhaustion.


    Pretty much completely off. Think unlike patents.

  • Reply 8 of 63
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,819member
    solipsismx wrote: »
    Three days to go and we know so little. Tim Cook really has doubled down on security.

    Next week all those caught attempting to leak information that are locked up in Apple's basement will me let out ... :D
  • Reply 9 of 63
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 6,530member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Ireland View Post



    The sweetest deal would be one that combines Pandora and Spotify, and gives people the option to choose free or paid monthly plans with a different set of features / limitations. That would please everyone. But that probably won't happen, sadly.


     


    Just keep in mind that the objective is to make money, not please everyone. Why we expect altruism and warm fuzzies out of a capitalistic corporation I don't know.

  • Reply 10 of 63
    applezillaapplezilla Posts: 941member


    Oh, Sony... How pitiful you have become. I miss the old days.


     


    Who will end up owning Sony?


     


    Samsung? Apple? Microsoft? Amazon? The Mountain View Ad Company?

  • Reply 11 of 63
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,819member
    lkrupp wrote: »
    Just keep in mind that the objective is to make money, not please everyone. Why we expect altruism and warm fuzzies out of a capitalistic corporation I don't know.

    Oh, I don't know ... having been closely involved with Apple since the early Apple ][ days I have to say I have had warm fuzzies from Apple many, many times. Ok, a few scared out of my mind experience too but over all definitely way more on the warm fuzzies side. :D
  • Reply 12 of 63
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 19,675member
    ireland wrote: »
    The sweetest deal would be one that combines Pandora and Spotify, and gives people the option to choose free or paid monthly plans with a different set of features / limitations. That would please everyone. But that probably won't happen, sadly.

    If this is truly as much about Apple reinvigorating their targeted iAd program as industry sources say then offering a paid subscription would be shooting themselves. I decided (and said) weeks ago that "iRadio" is intended to serve as an iAd kickstarter. In the past several days more and more articles agree with that. If not Apple would have done what Google did, negotiate cash deals for content IMO

    The good thing is that there will not be much in the way of advertising interruptions when it's first rolled out, picking up steam over the next year, if stories are accurate (and the service is real and actually ships with the next iPhone).
  • Reply 13 of 63
    andysolandysol Posts: 2,506member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppleZilla View Post


    Oh, Sony... How pitiful you have become. I miss the old days.


     


    Who will end up owning Sony?


     


    Samsung? Apple? Microsoft? Amazon? The Mountain View Ad Company?



    If you recall- they just had an article stating Sony was going to be splitting it's media and hardware divisions.  Media was selling so "Sony" could focus on Hardware.


     


    Interestingly enough- Sony media makes money hand over fist and hardware loses it.

  • Reply 14 of 63
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,589member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post





    Three days to go and we know so little. Tim Cook really has doubled down on security.


    The difference is this is not hardware with its evidence trail. This is just people talking (and server farms and speculation) 


    This is more fun. There is no surprises in the HW anymore.

  • Reply 15 of 63
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,589member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post





    If this is truly as much about Apple reinvigorating their targeted iAd program as industry sources say then offering a paid subscription would be shooting themselves. I decided (and said) weeks ago that "iRadio" is intended to serve as an iAd kickstarter. In the past several days more and more articles agree with that. If not Apple would have done what Google did, negotiate cash deals for content IMO



    The good thing is that there will not be much in the way of advertising interruptions when it's first rolled out, picking up steam over the next year, if stories are accurate (and the service is real and actually ships with the next iPhone).


    I disagree. Apple's alleged new service may be a good vehicle for iAds but to say that iRadio is intended as an iAds kickstarter I think is misunderstanding Apple and how it works. Its exactly the kind of thing that is doomed to failure. iRadio will only succeed if the goal is to make it a successful service in its own right, and I really don't think Apple could be bothered to do it otherwise. Apple is not an advertising company. I can believe the two are working together but each is in it for its own purpose. 

  • Reply 16 of 63
    gazoobeegazoobee Posts: 3,754member


    I still don't see how this service can be anything other than a stream of content based on the "Genius" technology, and all Genius does is show you stuff from the same genre, and/or stuff that "other people also bought."  


     


    For me, Genius has never even got close to a good recommendation or an idea of what I like in music even after years of purchasing and analysing, but even if it works for others, it's still not going to be anywhere as good as an old fashioned curated Internet radio station.  


     


    It's almost a sure thing as well, that a part of the deal is the music companies will be promoting music to the end user through this service.  In other words, if you listen to a lot of "alternative" music (a ridiculously gigantic and eclectic category that covers everything from electropop to folk), then any new "alternative" albums will most likely be showing up in your stream whether you like that kind of music or not.  The whole thing sounds a lot closer to AM radio than anything else.  


     


    I already listen to real Internet radio stations and rely on some of them to discover new music.  Why would I replace one of these with a lesser, automated version from Apple that's virtually guaranteed to not do as good a job?  


     


    It's simply impossible for any algorithm to be as good at picking the music as an actual human curator who has ears and a brain and exists in a certain cultural milieu. 

  • Reply 17 of 63
    curtis hannahcurtis hannah Posts: 1,683member
    Well Maybe Apple will have an Internet radio service
  • Reply 18 of 63
    gazoobeegazoobee Posts: 3,754member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post





    Three days to go and we know so little. Tim Cook really has doubled down on security.


     


    Sarcasm?  We know about as much as we always know/knew AFAICS.  

  • Reply 19 of 63
    tbelltbell Posts: 3,146member
    gazoobee wrote: »
    I still don't see how this service can be anything other than a stream of content based on the "Genius" technology, and all Genius does is show you stuff from the same genre, and/or stuff that "other people also bought."  

    For me, Genius has never even got close to a good recommendation or an idea of what I like in music even after years of purchasing and analysing, but even if it works for others, it's still not going to be anywhere as good as an old fashioned curated Internet radio station.  

    It's almost a sure thing as well, that a part of the deal is the music companies will be promoting music to the end user through this service.  In other words, if you listen to a lot of "alternative" music (a ridiculously gigantic and eclectic category that covers everything from electropop to folk), then any new "alternative" albums will most likely be showing up in your stream whether you like that kind of music or not.  The whole thing sounds a lot closer to AM radio than anything else.  

    I already listen to real Internet radio stations and rely on some of them to discover new music.  Why would I replace one of these with a lesser, automated version from Apple that's virtually guaranteed to not do as good a job?  

    It's simply impossible for any algorithm to be as good at picking the music as an actual human curator who has ears and a brain and exists in a certain cultural milieu. 

    Many people, myself included, enjoy Pandora. I am I interested to see how iRadio differs. I see Apple using its genius technology to give you streams.
  • Reply 20 of 63
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    stelligent wrote: »
    OTOH, we knew virtually nothing when music sales on iTunes was announced with multiple labels already signed up. I think it was likewise with iPad and book publishers?

    That was 2001(?) when they had much less mindshare. I think the iTMS and the Windows version of iTunes came out right about the same time.

    gazoobee wrote: »
    Sarcasm?  We know about as much as we always know/knew AFAICS.  

    Not at all. I seem to recall SW leaks being much more rampant than before. The best we have is really bad image (using Instagram's Lochness filter) of what is purported to be the iOS 7's home screen. We won't now if that's accurate until we can compare the actual release.

    Certain things that require Apple dealing with 3rd-parties always get some leaks but that isn't something Cook can reign in. We certainly don't have specifics of iRadio, just some very general idea that Apple is signing some sort of deal with music labels about ad revenue.
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